Join Garrick Chow for an in-depth discussion in this video Start building your brand today, part of Growing Your Small Business with LinkedIn.
- [Instructor] The goal of optimizing your LinkedIn profile is to showcase your expertise and make worthwhile business connections. Let's review a few easy steps you can take to start improving your profile today. One, upload your professional headshot. You don't have to wear a suit or any official clothing. And don't worry if you don't know how to take headshots. It doesn't necessarily have to look like a professional portrait. The key is to include an image that captures what you want to convey to members, prospects, customers, and your network. Make sure to use a high-quality photo that's at least 400 by 400 pixels.
Anything smaller than that will appear blurry and look unprofessional to your profile visitors. Number two, customize your profile URL to stand apart and appear unique. In most cases, this can be as simple as using your first and last name. Be aware though that if you have a common name like say Sally Jones, that URL may already be taken by someone else. So this is another reason to start today and get your custom URL set up. If your name is taken, you can try adding your middle initial or as we mentioned earlier, you can use your company name in your address instead.
Whatever the case, a custom URL differentiates you and helps others find you more easily when searching for contacts on the platform. Number three, update your LinkedIn headline. You're allowed 120 characters here so use them wisely to make a great first impression. This is a useful opportunity to include keywords your perfect client would use to find your business online. Keep in mind that your headline is highly visible, searchable, and the first thing members will read about you. So be sure your LinkedIn headline presents you in the best possible light.
Number four, update your contact information. When you fill out your contact and personal information completely, LinkedIn rewards your thoroughness with greater visibility among your network. Also take advantage of the option two change default contact labels such as personal website or company blog to reflect keywords your target audience uses to search for your product or service online. For example, you might change a generic nondescript website label to one that's very specific about your business such as San Francisco Walking Tours or Best Coffee in Oakland.
Number five, fine tune your summary. The summary should focus more on your ideal customer than you. Write it in a way that makes readers instantly recognize themselves in your description. Also be sure to outline the specific problems they're facing and what solutions you have to offer. Share why you're the expert they should contact for help. Number six, consider introducing yourself with a video. You can post videos and other media in the summary section of your LinkedIn profile. Just like how your headshot doesn't necessarily have to be professionally shot, neither does your introductory video.
In fact, your smartphone or tablet probably has a high enough quality camera to get the job done. Some people who visit your profile might prefer to watch a video than read text so use that to your advantage in promoting your business. All you have to do is turn on the camera in your place of business or a location where your customers would be and start recording. Explain exactly who you serve, what problems you solve for them, and how you do it. Include a mention of your website URL and an invitation for the viewer to visit you there. Be sure to include a compelling title and a keyword rich description of your business to accompany the video as well.
And remember to let your personality shine through. Number seven, work history and education. Now if you've been a member of the workforce for decades, and your earlier education and career path doesn't reflect the business you're in today, it's okay to omit those. But you'll definitely want to include your training, education, and work history that shows the longevity, experience, reliability, and versatility that contributed to your success in your current role. Number eight, make your profile interactive. If you have video or sound footage that helps tell the story of you and your business, it's a good idea to include it in your LinkedIn profile.
You can also upload relevant video content to your profile in the form of video blog posts and updates to provide value to your viewers. Number nine, obtain recommendations. The social proof and authority that a well written and glowing recommendation conveys really can't be overstated. If you have a customer, a client, or colleague who's had a great professional experience with you, don't be afraid to ask them for a recommendation on LinkedIn. Most will be happy to do so, especially if you delivered great value to them. Number 10, list your certifications.
Listing your certifications and training gives your profile added professionalism and authority and positions you as a trusted resource. Remember, customers need to know, like, and trust you. And lastly, although you want to share as much about yourself as possible, it's still important to think about your privacy. Be sure to double check your LinkedIn privacy settings so that you can personalize things such as who can see your profile and connections, whether you want to appear active on LinkedIn, who can see your email address, and how LinkedIn uses your data. To update your privacy settings, go to your navigation bar, click Me, and then click Settings and Privacy.
- Optimizing your LinkedIn profile
- Building your brand
- Creating a strong network
- Networking like a pro
- Turning leads into clients